This post is a continuation of Berlin- Day 1 and continues with Berlin- Day 3
Day 2 in Berlin we filled it with the culture of the city: most of the day was spent exploring Museum Island, viewing the incredible Berliner Dom, then a stroll along the open gallery East Side Gallery, and finished off with drinks and a sunset city view at the top of the Berlin TV Tower.
What We Saw:
The historical and city center of Berlin. Here is where you will find: cafes, restaurants, and museums.
Museum Island (Museumsinsel)
Oh was I excited to visit Museum Island. I love museums. But, Oh. My. God, the history! The history collection on Museum Island is breathtaking and unforgettable, with some of my serious childhood favorites I finally was able to witness.
If I had a favorite celebrity, but that celebrity was a historical artifact…I got to meet some of my favorite “celebrity” items! Being a history nerd I was “geeking” out the entire time over so many major historical artifacts. I can feel my heart fluttering just thinking about the museum again 🙂 A UNESCO World Heritage Site; the five museums on the Museumsinsel, are a collection of unified but diverse collections.
This amazing museum houses classical antiquities. They boast one of the world’s best archaeological collections from the Ancient Near East, including the Gate of Miletus and the Ishtar Gate of Babylon.
The Neues Museum focuses on antiquities of ancient civilizations. The museum houses some of the world’s most famous artifacts. Most notably: Nefertiti bust.
Cost: 18,00 € per adult for all Museum Exhibitions
- An average visit for each museum lasts about 2 hrs (4 hrs EACH if you’re a nerd like me).
- Free cloakrooms and lockers are available. You deposit a €1 coin, to receive back when you retrieve your belongings.
- Audio guides are free and included with your ticket price. I highly recommended.
- There are some accessibility restrictions, make sure you look over Sage Traveling for advice.
- If you are visiting more than 3 or 4 museums on your visit to Berlin, then I highly recommend you purchase a Berlin Museum Pass for 3 days of free access to over 30 museums!
The Berliner Dom
The biggest church in Berlin. The Dom was constructed from 1894 to 1905. The architectural style is in the style of the then-popular: Neo-Gothic, Neo-Renaissance or Neo-Baroque buildings. The dome makes you think of the Dome in Florence or even St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.
The main space, the “Sermon Church” is beautiful. Corinthian columns, marble floors, and gilded everything. Keep walking to find the Organ. The organ in the Dome has over 7,000 pipes making it one of the largest organs in the Germany.
Take the tour and learn more about Germany’s interesting religious history. Hear about the burial crypts of the Hohenzollern dynasty who ruled Prussia from the Middle Ages and into the German Empire. They influenced the Dom’s construction and vision because the Monarch of Prussia was the highest body of the Protestant church.
While current political leaders are no longer heads of the Church anymore, the Berliner Dom is still used for official services, like the Washington National Cathedral or Westminster Abbey in London.
It’s a nice few minutes walk from museum island and you can even climb to the top of the dome for a beautiful city view. We didn’t go up as you can see from the photo it was a rather cloudy/misty day.
Cost: 7 € per adult. however, you can get in free if you’re visiting during the service OR have a Berlin Pass. The entrance also includes audio guides for an additional 3 €.
East Central District
A noisy cluster of cafes, bars, and shops. Find street art or museums near the Mitte District.
East Side Gallery
The East Side Gallery is a 1.3 kilometre long section of the Berlin Wall, which once divided the city into East and West Berlin. Most of the Berlin Wall was demolished after the fall in 1989, the East Side Gallery is renowned for its historic and artistic flare.
This part of the original standing wall has been turned into the largest open-air gallery in the world, displaying more than 100 paintings by 118 artists, from 21 different countries. The artwork on the wall focus on political commentary as well as spreading messages of love and peace.
You can visit Berlin multiple times and go to East Side Gallery each time to find it always changing.
Tip: You may be approached by ‘soldiers’ offering souvenir passport stamps for a donation – STAY AWAY from getting your passport stamped. Getting one can actually invalidate your passport!
Where We Ate:
We saw this “beach bar” across the river when visiting the Dom. There were lawn chairs outside with people relaxing and enjoying beers alongside the river. The Ampelmann is an outdoor riverside bar across from Museum Island that gave us a sense of relaxation after our morning filled with museums and stone.
I loved the quirkiness of the place. It was decorated with it’s little man mascot everywhere you looked from seating to the food itself.
The food was good and the service was OK. Mostly it was the best spot for lunch for the atmosphere.
The TV Tower is Berlin’s highest building (1,207 ft) and visible throughout all central districts. You can buy two kinds of tickets:
- One, for the viewing platform where an elevator takes you up to the sphere. Here you can snap a few pictures and walk into the standing bar for a drink while you enjoy the view.
- Cost: 13€ + 3€ for tea or snacks.
- Two, if are feeling romantic, book tickets for the rotating restaurant at the top. You must book ahead of time especially if you want to sit next to the window for gorgeous 360 views.
Eating at the Fernsehturm was an amazing experience. Though not cheap, it’s one of those things that you’d love to do once.
We enjoyed our sunset dinner, slowly rotating as our view went from one of warmth into a twinkling lighted city. The food was fantastic, although service was a bit slow. However, with the wonderful company I had and the beautiful city view to admire, you don’t mind so much.
View all the places we stayed and visited in Berlin.